Loading
Search
NEWS STORIES

WisDOT leaders hopeful for increase in Northwoods railSubmitted: 04/24/2014
Story By Adam Fox


ACROSS THE NORTHWOODS - Railroads give businesses a chance to move loads of material for a low cost. Loggers could use rail as an alternative to trucking material, but many businesses don't get that opportunity in the Northwoods anymore.

Canadian National bought rail in the Northwoods about a decade ago. They have cut back service drastically since then.

Some counties haven't seen train travel in years, which hurts business. Now, those businesses want to reestablish rail service.

In response, a group of counties in Northern Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan formed the Northwoods Rail Transit Commission.

Their goal is to bring back efficient rail to their counties. The group has been working with Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) officials, like Dennis Leong, since forming the group in 2012.

Leong believes there is an opportunity to bring back rail to the region based off of the feedback from businesses and local governments.

"We did a survey of businesses in the Northwoods area and found potentially quite a few business interests in rail," Leong said. "They're meeting with CN (Canadian National) and having discussions, so hopefully maybe certain sections can be brought back to service."

Leong wants to help expand rail in the north, but private companies might only re-establish rail if they think they can make money on it.

"Part of the challenge is that you have to have the volume in which the railroads want to make sure they have an operating system to put back in service," Leong said.

Leaders at the Northwoods Rail Transit Commission are trying to win a multimillion dollar federal grant, TIGER, from the U.S. Department of Transportation to get more log cars for rail in the Northwoods. They'll host their monthly meeting Friday at 10 a.m. at the Oneida County Courthouse.

Wisconsin has 13 freight railroads using a system of more than 33 hundred mile of rail, according to WisDOT.



Related Weblinks:
Northwoods Rail Transit Commission

Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
| Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com





 IN OTHER NEWS

MERRILL - Police think they found the person who broke into several churches in Lincoln County.

Officers from both the Merrill and Tomahawk Police Departments searched an apartment at 229 Second Street South in Tomahawk April 21.

Merrill Police told us the search warrant allowed police to look for evidence in the Merrill burglaries.

+ Read More

Play Video

WOODRUFF - When a loved one dies, family members remind each other that a piece of that person will always live on. A funeral home in Woodruff takes that saying literally.

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - Inside Tricia's Treasures in downtown Rhinelander, Jennifer Sturzl takes a lot of pride in a carefully crafted latte. But out the back door, things aren't as pretty.

Across the alley sits the run-down former Kabel Auto building. Its brick walls are heavily aged, and many windows are boarded up. 

"First of all, it's an eyesore," Sturzl said Thursday morning.

But soon, that so-called eyesore across from McDonald's will come down, and it could likely turn into a parking lot on South Stevens Street.

+ Read More

Play Video

ONEIDA COUNTY - The number of people battling aquatic invasive species here in Oneida County keeps growing.

Thursday night, one of three Clean Boats, Clean Waters workshops hosted by the Oneida County Land and Water Conservation Department was held. These workshops are to help inspectors know how and why it's important to prevent the spread of AIS.

"This is to teach watercraft inspectors whether they're new or seasoned the ins and outs of how to inspect a watercraft as their coming in and out of boat landings so we can help protect water bodies," said Oneida County Aquatic Invasive Species Coordinator Stephanie Boismenue.

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - Rain, sleet, and snow led to at least three car accidents Thursday morning near Rhinelander.

At around 10 a.m. Thursday, a driver lost control of a family vehicle and rolled off onto the side of Highway 17 on Rhinelander's north side.

+ Read More

Play Video

BOULDER JUNCTION - You may have noticed the lakes look higher this spring.

And you'd be right.

+ Read More

MADISON - A top psychologist at Wisconsin's troubled youth prison was fired for allegedly ignoring the requests of dozens of inmates who asked for help.

Records obtained by The Associated Press show Dr. D. Jeremy John was accused in December of not following up with 26 youth inmates at the Lincoln Hills and Copper Lake prison facility.

+ Read More
+ More General News
Search: 





Click Here